Picasso meets Pythagoras

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Dan Sutton, math tutor and visual artist, created a sculpture on display in Moody Learning Center Feb. 13. It took Sutton the entire winter break to complete the piece. Photo by Aly Miranda

Correction: Math tutor Dan Sutton established the Octa-Tetra Museum at 1100 Broadway in 2011.

Tutor blends love of math and art.

By Solomon A. Wilson


By day, Dan Suttin, a math tutor on campus since 2011, helps students with homework and prepares them for their math classes.

But in his spare time he is the visual artist responsible for creating a sculpture in Moody Learning Center and opening the Octa-Tetra Museum at 1100 Broadway.

The museum was established in 1978 to display his vibrant sculptures that combine math and art, using shapes like triangles, rhombuses, squares and other angled figures.

The sculptures range in colors from neon orange, such as his latest on the second floor of Moody, to a plain white sculpture that resembles an atom.

“I appreciate and celebrate the math in art, and the artistry in math,” said Suttin, standing Jan. 27 next to his sculpture in Moody. It has multiple neon orange triangles made of a cardboard-like material. The triangles are attached to each other, making a spherical sculpture that stands almost 4 feet tall. It took Suttin the entire winter break to complete.

   Suttin has been doing these creations since 1978 after he was inspired by a library book explaining shapes in detail.

“I believe teaching is a performance art,” Suttin said proudly, as onlookers admired his work.

Suttin said he holds an interactive show at his museum that educates his audience on his unique sculpting style.

“I can accept up to 12 people at a time, and I do a complete show,” Suttin said.

Working with kids of all ages, Suttin allows them to get hands-on experience with merging math and art while having fun.

“I’m just a big kid that plays with blocks,” he said.

He named the museum after shapes used in his work — an octagon and a tetrahedron.

STEAM, which stands for science, technology, engineering art and math, is what Suttin stands by when speaking of his art.

To see more of Suttin’s work, visit Youtube.com/therangervideo and a video titled “Math, paper, scissors.”

Suttin said he is excited to see his artwork shown on campus and anticipates adding unique sculptures to the growing collection in his museum.

For more information about the museum or to book an appointment to view the sculptures, call 210-884-4897 or email uncledan@homespun4homeschoolers.com.


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